Business intelligence (BI) on-the-go is finally here, thanks to the arrival of high-performance mobile devices and the evolution of robust data-carrying infrastructure.
That is the view of research group Ovum, who says mobile BI solutions can now enable senior executives and line-of-business managers to adapt to a new “connected” business reality, which expects them to have ready access to BI information in the future.
In its latest evaluation of the mobile BI landscape, the company believes mid-sized vendors – MicroStrategy, Information builders and Yellowfin – are leading the charge with feature-packed yet functional mobile solutions, while mega BI vendor SAP emerges as a top solution for iOS-enabled devices.
Ovum’s report finds that while all vendors fully support the iOS platform, followed closely by Android (90%), there is a considerable lack support for BlackBerry (50%) and Windows (33%) devices.
“There is no question that the iPad’s success in the consumer market has affected vendors’ go-to-market strategies,” says Fredrik Tunvall, analyst, Ovum.
“However, to reach a larger audience, they should consider supporting native / hybrid applications for Android and Windows devices, as both are expected to become increasingly prevalent in the enterprise, especially in emerging markets.”
While SAP’s offering has been driven by its acquisitions of Afaria, Syclo and Sybase, and a BI roadmap that is heavily influenced by a “mobile-first” mindset, competitors IBM, Oracle and SAS are also eyeing market share.
Ovum believes they have the technology and necessary development resources to improve their solutions quickly in 2013.
“We expect BI vendors to enhance their mobile capabilities through in-house development and a continued wave of M&A activity,” Tunvall says.
“This will also be where we will see some of the most interesting and innovative developments in BI and analytics over the next few years.”
Ovum’s research also exposes a growing trend towards packaged and purpose-built mobile applications for verticals and line of business managers.
Vendors will use this model to provide a collection of prebuilt applications and/or offer a mobile development platform where users can easily develop and deploy mobile applications for specific needs or roles.